It isn’t easy to keep a good relationship going strong. Maybe the connection isn’t quite there. Maybe the person you were crushing on isn’t the person you thought they were after getting to know them. Maybe you don’t want the same things out of life. For whatever the reason break-ups happen all the time.
I’ve been married almost twenty years and within those twenty years we have had children, careers and full time responsibilities. Finding the time for each other becomes more time consuming than the actual time spent together. With several interruptions and reasons why things just don’t go our way it can become quite frustrating to keep trying. The time that is spent together often seems rushed with expectations of someone or something interrupting.
Since I’ve started writing these articles for my readers, I’ve actually taken my advice and applied it to my own life. The results are quite satisfying. Our alone time hasn’t been spontaneous in a long time and most of the time it has to be planned out, but that doesn’t mean it has to be rushed or that we have to give up the simple pleasures that make this time so precious. I’ve gotten out of the habit that I will dress down because ‘it’s just him’. I put a little time into myself when I know we will be spending this quality time together. He was worth it when we first met, why shouldn’t he be worth it now? If anything he should be MORE worth it given the things we have gone through and grown together through.
If you think you have found the perfect person and you are afraid of drifting apart or getting too comfortable that your relationship falls apart, try doing a few small things today that could just save your relationship in the future.
1. Throw them a text or a cute selfie. Tell them how you’re day is going. Tell them you hope they are having a good day. Wish them luck on something they will be going through or just tell them you are thinking of them. It doesn’t have to be a lengthy worded text or email. Just a little tidbit of yourself that will keep you in their thoughts.
People get so wrapped up in their everyday lives that they tend to take advantage of their current relationship that it will always be strong and ‘there’ when they get home. Things tend to get too comfortable and that comfort can turn stale or mundane. Keeping them thinking of you may just be the thing to help keep the fires burning even when you’re not there.
If you just can’t seem to squeeze in time for your significant other, incorporate that time with something else you need to do. Go shopping together. Invite them to go to the gym with you and workout. Cut your meeting in half and meet them out for lunch. The point is, if you want your relationship to work, sacrifice something for the time needed to invest in them.
Get a babysitter! You hire a sitter when you go out. You hire a sitter when you have important events that you need to attend. You plan a sitter when there is something important in your life that you cannot include your children in. Why not hire a babysitter so you can stay home? Make him THAT important. Make a date to stay in and just be together. Turn off the phones, get rid of the electronic devices, add some music and just have fun with the precious time you have together.
2. Touch them when they talk to you. Slide your fingers along their arm as you walk by. Physical contact increases the oxytocin in blood. According to the Wikipedia “Oxytocin is a mammalian neurohypophysial hormone. Produced by the hypothalamus and stored and secreted by the posterior pituitary gland, oxytocin acts primarily as a neuromodulator in the brain. Oxytocin plays an important role in the neuroanatomy of intimacy, specifically in sexual reproduction of both sexes. It is the little things that can make a big difference.
3. Kiss more. This goes along with the physical contact. Even if it is just a small peck as he walks out the door or as you run out to do your errands or a lip lock that lasts long enough for the kids to get grossed out. Kissing also releases oxytocin as well as Cortisol. Cortisol is a stress hormone and is released to help the body return to its normal state after something bad happens. Kissing releases these hormones causing a desire for more.
4. Try not to associate all physical contact with sex. Most couples get so busy with life that the only time they get together is for sex. This type of association can train your brain into thinking that all physical contact will lead to sex. Just cuddle or slide in for a kiss with no expectations. Again, sometimes basic physical contact is enough .
5. Do things together. Make a date and go out. The time you spend together is important in keeping a strong relationship whether it is just the two of you or with another couple or group of friends. Don’t let your life get filled with responsibilities. Keep some time out for fun and togetherness.
6. Make memories together. Do something spontaneous. Not everything has to be planned. Sometimes just going with an idea works and the memories you make with your partner will always be with you even when you cannot find the time to be together.
7. Make time for yourself or with friends, away from your significant other as well. It will help make you a more well rounded person individually and it will make your alone time together more valuable. You’ll have more to talk about and you will feel like you are your own person with your own interests and hobbies.
8. Get enough sleep each night. Sleep is important. Research says a lack of sleep makes you tired (obviously) and more irritable. Your stress levels increase and your tolerance decreases. This leads to negativity and the possibility of arguing easier than letting the little things go.
9. Acknowledge the positive things they do or simply compliment them. People tend to do better when praise comes their way. Don’t hesitate to comment on something your partner accomplishes. Encourage the things they want to do and support them in their decisions. Being there for them makes for a happier partnership and a stronger connection.
10. Show some interest in what they are interested in. Even if you aren’t crazy about it, if you show that you will at least try to like what they like they feel they are important enough to you. It shows you can love what they love even if you would rather do your own thing.
11. Say thank you. It’s easy to take advantage of someone you get use to being with every day especially when you are use to them taking care of the household chores or running to day care every day. Just say thank you for what they do. It doesn’t take much effort and it will make them feel like you appreciate what they do.
12. Finish a fight. By this I don’t mean fight until there is a winner. Your relationship shouldn’t be based on who wins or who loses. What I mean is don’t let the anger go. Don’t assume it’s gone if not resolved in a day. The age old saying “Don’t go to bed mad” really isn’t as important as making sure you talk things out even if it goes into the next day. Don’t hold a grudge and don’t assume the argument is over. Communication is the key to a strong relationship. Talk it out and try to come to a conclusion. Letting it fester only hurts the relationship. If it is something that just can’t be worked out try putting yourself in their shoes. Maybe you can understand where they are coming from better from their perspective.
13. Keep your intimacy intimate. What you have together is special. With Facebook, Twitter, and everything else on the World Wide Web, it’s not hard to forget what should be public and what should be private. Keeping what you have intimately between you will give your connection more value and it will give your better half a reason to want to continue keeping that connection with you.
Take pride in being who you are with. Show them through the little things in your day to day life that they mean something to you and that they are in your thoughts. Getting comfortable in your relationship is ok but don’t let it get stale. The main aspect is your connection. Keep it strong and keep it alive by making that connection, keeping that connection and valuing that connection.
It is called a partnership for a reason. Cherish it always.